Grinnell Supports Transgender Community

February 24, 2017

Dear Grinnellians:

The federal guidance that was issued through a Dear Colleague letter by the Department of Justice and the Department of Education on May 13, 2016, was recently rescinded by the current administration. The 2016 letter provided federal guidance regarding a variety of protections for transgender, gender non-conforming, gender queer, agender, non-binary, or questioning people. This included, among other things, provisions for gender-inclusive restrooms and locker rooms, and the right to use the facility that corresponds with a person's gender identity.

I would like to assure all community members, but particularly those who may be affected by this administrative action and other related policies, that we will do all we can to support them.

As with other recent governmental actions, College staff members have reached out to affected students to offer support. Grinnellians of all genders should have safe and equitable access to all facilities, programs, and activities.

Grinnell College will continue to offer gender-inclusive housing, restrooms, and locker rooms. Students, faculty, and staff will continue to have autonomy when choosing a facility. Additionally, we believe that people have the right to be referred to by the name and pronouns they use to describe themselves.

Related efforts are underway, including increasing gender-inclusive housing options, solidifying the name change process on campus, and offering training for faculty and staff.

Students, faculty, and staff are still protected by Title IX. Any incidence of harassment, discrimination, or bias should be reported to Angela Voos, Title IX coordinator, or Lakesia Johnson, chief diversity officer.

No matter what policy changes may be coming, Grinnell will hold fast to our core values and commitments. We must ensure that all Grinnellians are able to learn, teach, and work in a safe environment


Raynard S. Kington, President

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